KIDS, COPS & MONKEYS, OH MY

For Hicksflicks.com, Friday, April 17, 2015

A popular novel adapted for the big screen, along with a sequel to a family film and a G-rated documentary, lead new movies opening around the Salt Lake Valley this weekend.

“Child 44” (R). Tom Hardy and Noomi Rapace are reunited (after “The Drop”) for this adaptation of Tom Rob Smith’s best-selling novel (the first of a trilogy) about a military police investigator in the Stalin-era Soviet Union looking into child murders that his superiors would rather deny. Gary Oldman co-stars.

“Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2” (PG). Kevin James returns as the title character, attending a mall-cop convention in Las Vegas with his teenage daughter, giving her a last vacation before she heads off to college. But while there he stumbles onto a nefarious plot and has to go into action.

“Monkey Kingdom” (G). Disneynature’s eighth annual Earth Day documentary follows a family of monkeys living in ancient ruins in Sri Lanka. Narrated by Tina Fey.

“True Story” (R). “True Story” is indeed based on a true story, a memoir by journalist Michael Finkel (Jonah Hill) about his relationship with Christian Longo (James Franco), who murdered his own wife and children. When he was apprehended, Longo used Finkel’s name as his own, so Finkel visited him in prison to learn why. Co-stars include Felicity Jones and Gretchen Mol.

“Unfriended” (R). A sort of found-footage horror film from the viewpoint of computers on which six high school students are video chatting when they receive a threatening message from a classmate that committed suicide a year earlier. Looks like a cyber riff on Agatha Christie’s “And Then There Were None.”

“Beyond the Reach” (not rated). Yet another variation on “The Most Dangerous Game,” with Michael Douglas as a hedonistic hunter in the desert, stalking out-of-season bighorn sheep with a young guide (Jeremy Irvine), whom he eventually turns into his prey. Exclusively at the Tower Theater.

“Queen and Country” (not rated). John Boorman’s sequel to his 1987 film “Hope and Glory” picks up 10 years later with Bill Rohan (Callum Turner) going into basic training before being sent into battle during the Korean War. Co-stars include David Thewlis and Richard E. Grant. Exclusively at the Broadway Centre Cinemas.

“Wild Tales” (R, in Spanish with English subtitles). This Argentine-Spanish production is a dark anthology with six stories about violence and revenge. Exclusively at the Broadway Centre Cinemas.